Philly experimental electronic groovers Pink Skull are gearing up for the vinyl release of Huitlacoche, their new 6-track LP out next week via My Favorite Robot records. To get a taste, the band is offering up a free digital download of the track “Mutant Comfort” through XLR8R. The synth-heavy song is melodic with digitized percussion to carry the track through boundless dimensions of time and space. Huitlacoche has Pink Skulls returning to fundamental house/electronic roots: all noise, no nonsense. Get the free download through XLR8R here, and stream Huitlacoche below.
Philadelphia dance-pop artist Dream Safari (the stage name of Chris Coulton) has employed the talents of local Philly artists for a remix album of the recently-released Night Howl. The collection features ten uniquely reworked tracks of the previously mentioned five song EP, all done by some of the most prolific Philly DJs out there right now - Blue Satellite, Pink Skull, Tropes, and TygerStrype to name a few – and its colorful cover art was designed by Andy States of Cruiser. Night Howl: the Remixes is set to drop December 17th. Download Blue Satellite’s remix of “Emerald” below.
As far as we can tell, the newly launched 100 Years Of Solid Dudes is a project from Jameszilla (of the Broadzilla DJ’s and Phillytronic dance floor wrecking crew Making Time). Head over here to download a 44 minute “car-crash sample symphony” mix that he made that contextualizes Aretha Franklin, the Ides of March, Elvis Costello, Bowie and dozens of more samples into one long funky massive mix, as well as releases from Wooden Email, Universo Paralelo, and Potent Mutant. Dig deeper into 100 Years of Solid Dudes here. Admittedly, we think there’s a little brand confusion going on here, but we like it.
Local folks including Ape School, Tadoma and King Britt – as well as outside-Philly names Benoît Pioulard and Lymbyc System – tried their hand at remixing Arc In Round‘s layered and heavy debut LP in the new ::::remixed:::: collection, available today as a free download. The set contains eight reconstructions of songs like “Spirit” (morphed into a driving krautrock rager by Pink Skull) and “II” (made all pulsing and dreamy by A Sunny Day in Glasgow), as well as two unreleased songs – “Even” and “Days Untried.” Give it a listen below, and download it at Bandcamp.
Special thanks to all of the bands for coming to our studio, and to John Vettese for recording them. We’d also like to thank volunteer production assistants Fred Knittel, Madeleine Lesperance, and Dan Malloy as well as photographers Kate Bracaglia, Corey Cohen, Sarah Fry, Shamus McGroggan, Noah Gabriel Merenda, Sylvia Ramirez, and Heidi Schlenzig for sharing their work.
Click here to download the 18-track compilation in its entirety as a .zip file. Want to hear more? Click here to listen to the full sessions by all 18 local acts; you can also download The Key Studio Sessions Compilation Volume I, Volume 2, and Volume 3.
City Rain “Real Good”
Pink Skull “Oh, Monorail”
Mason Porter “Back To Where We Started From”
Univox “What’s More”
Arrah and the Ferns “Waterproof Gold Watch”
Acid Kicks “Take My Soul Away”
The Menzingers “Mexican Guitars”
Music For Headphones “Why”
Lushlife “Gymnopiede 1.2″
Griz “The Secret In The Garden”
New Sweden “Saint, Don’t You Lie”
Sunny Ali and the Kid “Stop the Haiti”
Chill Moody “Cotton”
Little Big League “St. John’s”
For this month’s Key Studio Video Session, we profiled Pink Skull, the Philladelphia indie-dance quintet that, last year, released its third album, Psychic Welfare, on RVNG Int’l Records. In our video, band leaders Julian Grefe and J.G. Geller talk about bridging the divide between hooky pop songs and expansive disco epics, the growth of the electronica scene in Philadelphia, and the origins of their “music for record-store nerds.” Watch the video below and download their performance from December’s Key Studio Sessions Live concert at Johnny Brenda’s.
Bleeding Rainbow performs at The Level Room on Dec. 31st
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 30th
Gandalf Murphy And The Slambovian Circus of Dreams at World Cafe Live (7:30 p.m., $30–$40); Mock Suns + Music Box Dynamo, Phantasm, Man The Fire at Milkboy Philly (9:30 p.m., 21+, $8–$10); Orbit to Leslie + The Circadian Rhythms, Your Children Is Beautiful (9:15 p.m., 21+, $10); Thursday + mewithoutYou, Screaming Females, Make Do And Mend at Theatre Of Living Arts (6 p.m., SOLD OUT)
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31st
Phonographic Arts presents Bleeding Rainbow with Eternal Summers + Creepoid, Arc In Round, Pink Skull, Slutever, Fire In The Hearts And Mind, and Exploding World at 8 p.m. at The Level Room; tickets to the 21+ show are 8 p.m.
Also Playing: Johnny Brenda’s and Philebrity present The Second Annual New Year’s Eve Snowflake Ball featuring DJ sets by Nick Krill (The Spinto Band) + Chris Powell (Man Man), Eric Slick (Dr. Dog), John Barthmus (Sun Airway), Schoolly D at Johnny Brenda’s (8 p.m., 21+, $5); Nico’s Gun + Lady, Greg D, Black Stars at The Fire (9 p.m., 21+, $10); Prowler + Busses, Hott Tubb at Kung Fu Necktie (8 p.m., 21+, $5)
SUNDAY, JANUARY 1st
Beth Hart + Christine Santelli, Gina Sicilla, Aster Phoenix at The Blockley ($45)
We’ve spent the better portion of the the week hyping up tonight’s Key Studio Sessions Live concert at Johnny Brenda’s, running interviews with performing acts Summer Fiction and Attia Taylor as well as a Pink Skull mixtape the band made just for us. Well, the show is finally here, and we couldn’t be more excited. A handful of free tickets are still available, but only if you RSVP here. In the meantime, you can listen to a track from each band below (including Key Studio Session tracks from Attia Taylor and Summer Fiction). See you tonight at the show!
Singer-songwriter Bill Ricchini‘s latest musical project, Summer Fiction, finds the former solo artist collaborating with a handful of other musicians, tying together his self-professed love of late-’60s pop and old movie scores. While recording Summer Fiction’s Key Studio Session, XPN2′s John Vettese described the band’s 2010 self-titled debut as a mix of “stylish arrangements and eclectic sounds, wistful love songs and breezy waltzes”—and it made a strong enough impression to land a spot in his Top 10 Philly Albums Of 2010 list. Below, you can listen to “By The Sea” from Key Studio Session Summer Fiction recorded earlier this year; the full session can be found here.
Pink Skull recently released its third full-length album, Psychic Welfare, via RVNG Intl. The DJ-and-producer duo (composed of Julian Grefe and Justin Geller) mixes elements of ’70s disco, ’80s new wave, and ’00s dance pop. You can listen to the album’s lead track, “Hot Bubblegum” (described as a “a Television-inspired piece of pop perfectly pushes this dichotomy of psychotic playfulness’) below.
Girls Rock Philly alum Attia Taylor has just released her third EP, Wild Forest, which is currently available on a pay-what-you-can basis over at Bandcamp. The EP follows up on last year’s Short Stories And Small Glories EP, which features seven tracks of experimental electronic pop. Below, you can listen to “Did I Look Like Myself” from the Key Studio Session she recorded earlier this year; the full session can be found here.